A Step in the Right Direction

07Sep09

The Arthritis Foundation interviewed me to put together a press release for this Sunday’s Arthritis Walk. On Saturday, my local paper picked up the story.

The article does have one inaccuracy that I feel I need to mention when I show it to people. I had my hip surgeries when I went to graduate school, not undergrad so I was fortunate enough to not miss out on too much in college.

I’m glad my story could be used to get information out there about JRA. There was one fact in the article that I didn’t even know:

Juvenile arthritis affects 300,000 children, or one out of every 246 children, making it among the most prevalent chronic childhood diseases in the United States. There are more children with juvenile arthritis than children with diabetes, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy and cerebral palsy combined, and yet most people are unaware that children can have arthritis.”

I was struck by the fact that there are more kids with this disease than the others mentioned put together. I have heard about these childhood diseases countless times in the media, and yet I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve heard JRA mentioned.

So despite feeling a bit nervous about putting myself out there, I’m really glad I did. If even a few people bother to read the article and learn something, it was entirely worth it.

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